ASB Premiership - Week 6,
Fred Taylor Park, Auckland,
Saturday 27 November, 2010
Mike GWYTHER 30'
Danny ATTWELL 86'
Halftime: 1-0 Referee: Jarrod Gillet (AUS) Crowd: 507
by staff reporter at Fred Taylor Park
AUCKLAND – There were shades of last season’s grand final as Waitakere United claimed a 2-1 win over a 10-man Canterbury United side 2-1 at Fred Talyor Park in Whenuapai today.
Seven months ago, the promise of a tight finale was broken when Paul Dirou received his marching orders in the first half and today a red card to Nick Wortelboer for bringing down Allan Pearce in a desperate last-man foul turned the game.
Dragons goalkeeper Tom Batty was more than equal to Pearce’s spot kick but the reprieve barely lasted a minute before Roy Krishna, who faced a late fitness test before suiting up for the defending champions, found Mike Gwyther at the back post with a threaded pass of surgical accuracy.
Pearce doubled the lead in the 71st minute when he beat Batty to a Zane Sole pass in a race the goalkeeper started favourite to win. One tap to round Batty and another to put the ball in an empty net and Waitakere were cruising.
Despite giving away a man advantage Canterbury grew in the second half, especially after Krishna was withdrawn by Emblen with an eye on a Champions League trip to New Caledonia next week.
But Canterbury’s movement, and the ability of Aaron Clapham to make the most of his free role meant Canterbury were never out of the game and when substitute Danny Attwell thundered in a header with four minutes remaining the visitors lifted for a final push at sharing the points.
Waitakere’s back four of Jack Pelter, Jason Rowley and fuillbacks Tim Myers and Aaron Scott were again outstanding individually and collectively and make it tough for centurion Neil Sykes to force his way back into the side.
Canterbury’s Ryan Tippert battled industriously up front in the absence of Russell Kamo while the home side, the ability to field Pearce, Gwyther Pearce and Ryan de Vries is an embarrassment of riches for Neil Emblen.
Canterbury coach Keith Braithwaite admitted he was two games was two too many to being playing Waitakere with ten men but praised his team’s resilience.
“It’s just a sign of how much character the team’s got,” Braithwaite said.
“We stuck at it for 60 minutes after the red card and to be honest, who would you have thought had 10 men? In that second half they sat back a bit but we took the game to them and had eight corners to their two.
“Their second goal was a mistake by us that they punished and who knows what could’ve happened if we hadn’t conceded.
“Waitakere are a great side and they’re eight points clear of us now but we take a lot of confidence out the game because if we can play like that week in and week out we’ll get something out of the season.
The win temporarily extends Waitakere’s lead to eight points, although the result of Hawke’s Bay United’s clash against Auckland will reduce it. However, they will still be in front when Neil Emblen’s men return from the Pacific.
“We know now we’ll be five to eight points ahead after this week so it’s great to be able to concentrate on the O-League now,” said Emblen.
“You don’t get any chances to resurrect yourself after a bad result so we can totally focus on that knowing that we’ll come back to the ASB Premiership in a good position.
“Canterbury sides now never give you anything. Keith Braithwaite’s got them well drilled and they’ve got some players that can hurt you were as at the start of his reign they were probably more about stopping you play, but I think he’s turned them into a good side going forward as well.
“They were tough today. I would’ve liked the penalty to have gone in to make it more comfortable but I think we were in control until the last 15 minutes.
“I’m really happy to get the three points because it was a potential banana skin against a very good side.”
Following their O-League jaunt, Waitakere’s next ASB Premiership match is another potential banana skin against a fast improving Waikato FC side in Hamilton on December 11, while Canterbury are at home to the same side next Sunday.
1. Danny ROBINSON (GK)
1. Tom BATTY (GK)
2. Jason ROWLEY
2. Dan TERRIS (C)
3. Aaron SCOTT
3. Nick WORTELBOER
4. Tim MYERS
4. Gareth ROWE
6. Jack PELTER
5. Tom SCHWARZ
8. Chris BALE
6. Glen COLLINS (ATTWELL 65')
10. Allan PEARCE
7. Aaron CLAPHAM
12. Roy KRISHNA (SOLE 62')
13. Gary MCDERMOTT
13. Michael GWYTHER (LUCAS 84')
17. Ryan TIPPETT (OVERTON 76')
17. Jake BUTLER (C)
23. Andy BARTON (FENI 76')
20. Ryan DE VRIES (LOVEMORE 70')
25. Andy PITMAN
11. Neil SYKES
22. Cory TURIPA
18. Zane SOLE (in 62')
8. Darren OVERTON (in 76')
19. Dakota LUCAS (in 84')
12.Gagame FENI (in 76')
22. Liam LITTLE (RGK)
15.Danny ATTWELL (in 65')
25. Sean LOVEMORE (in 70')
=2 yellow cards
= red card
Play by Play
Welcome to a sun-drenched Fred Taylor Park where Waitakere United entertain Canterbury United in a mouth-watering top of the table clash between the ASB Premiership's two unbeaten teams.
It's a rematch of last year's NZFC final but already Canterbury will have a slightly diiferent loko about them. Tom Lancaster is in England this season while golden boot contender Russell Kamo is unavailable. The Dragons new addition in midfield Joe Murray is out through suspension but All White Aaron Clapham will again be pulling the strings in the middle.
Waitakere have injury concerns over Fijian flyer Roy Krishna who is nursing a groin injury. Neil Emblen will leave it as late as possible before deciding whether to risk him this match or save him for OFC Champions League next week.
Speaking of O-League action, with Waitakere not playing in the ASB Premiership next weekend, a win today will ensure they return from New Caledonia with their lead (currently 5 points) in tact. If Canterbury can win today then they will have the chance to overtake Waitak next weekend.
A quick check at the TAB sees that Cantabury are ranked outsiders at $4.70. No wait. It's just gone up to $5.50. Must have been some money flooding in on the westies. For the record, Waitakere are $1.55 and the draw $3.50. Remember: game responsibly.
Team news on it's way
A moment's silence will be observed for the 29 miners who tragically lost their lives in the Pike River disaster.
Australian ref Jarrod Gillet gets the game underway. Waitakere attacking the northern end.
Allan PEARCE skips past WORTELBOER and deliivers a cross. Safely cleared. At the other end nice-guy Aaron SCOTT displays plenty of mongrel in a challenge on Andy BARTON
KRISHNA slips inside ROWE and tries to curl a shot past BATTY at the far post. His shot straightens, however, and sails wide.
The tackles are pretty tasty in the early stages. Nothing sinister, but both teams clearly trying to dominate physically.
CLassy one-two between PEARCE and BALE frees PEARCE in behind on the right hand side. WORTELBOER stretches to head the cross clear. End to end stuff.
Free kick to Waitakere midway on their right touchline. Delvery from PEARCE to closs to GK BATTY
Up and under from Waitakere is let bounce by KRISHNA (did he see it?), bounces for PEARCE on edge of area who draws a fine save from BATTY.
BALE meets KRISHNA cross with looping header but BATTY equal to it.
From a corner, BATTY spills a GWYTHER header and Pitman clears before BUTLER can stab it home.
KRISHNA's header hits a Canterbury player amidst cries of handball from the home side.
BARTON and PELTER go shoulder to shoulder just inside the area. BARTON eventually is muscled off the ball just outside.
Canterbury mount a couple of attacks, which have been rare recently. A cross BARTON is chested down by TIPPETT with his back to goal. Tries to spin and shoot and leaves CLAPHAM shaking his head as to why he didn't leave it for him to shoot.
Ooh! A Dan TERRIS headers hits the crossbar with ROBINSON beaten. Great corner delivery from CLAPHAM
Nick WORTELBOER can't stop PEARCE bursting through and while on the ground makes a last ditch, clumsy effort to tackle him, only to bring him down. GILLET points to the spot with no hesitation and shows WORTELBOER the red card.
SAVED! PEARCE goes down the middle but BATTY's trailing leg is enough to deflect it over and wide.
GOAL! Canterbury have no time to reflect on their reprieve as KRISHNA cuts open the red and blacks and puts a diagonal ball through the box. Too far for PEARCE but but GWYTHER meets it at the back post to give the home side a 1-0 lead.
Dan TERRIS almost puts it in his own net as he tries to block a GWYTHER cross. BATTY was beaten for all money.
BARTON tries his luck from outside the area but ROBINSON gathers easily.
Two minutes of inhury time to be played
Freekick to Canterbury 30m out. Clapham lines it up but can't clear trhe wall. Was an ambitious strikle given the distance anyway.
Great cross from CLAPHAM hangs at the back post but ROBINSON gets up well to beat SCHWARZ to it.
Halftime: Waitakere United lead 10-man Canterbury United 1-0 at the break.
Back underway at the Fred. No changes from either side in tyerms of personnel but KRISHNA seems to be dropping into midfield a bit more.
KRSIHNA drives to the sight of goal and unleashes a stinging diping shot which BATTY paws away with his left glove.
CLAPHAM evades the attention of MYERS initially but his caught with a trailing boot as he tries to turn inside. CLAPHAM is furious at not getting a free kick there. Probably has a decent case.
DE VRIES tries to tap in a KRISHNA shot cum pass but cannot get a clean touch on it under the challenge of ROWE.
CLAPHAM wins a free kick this time a she waits for the challenge from the defender and takes the hit.
this time he tries to go around the wall instead of over and although it didn't look like he struck it as well as he liked, his low effort has ROBINSON worried the whole way.
Canterbury, despite the numerical disadvantage, are finding space with good movement off the ball. CLAPHAM is drifting between the Waitakere midfield and defence and could yet spark something.
SUB: KRISHNA has done his part and is replaced by Zane SOLE.
Waitakere win a free kick in a dangerous position on the right. The right foot of SOLE curls it in and PEARCE knocks it back where a header on goal may have been the better option.
SUB: Danny ATTWELL come in for Glen COLLINS
another free kick from SOLE, from a straighter position is cleared off the line by TERRIS who drops off the wall.
Waitakere in cruise mode as they try to see out the game. Canterbury might be running out of gas with 10 men in this heat.
Ryan TIPPERT bustles his way -almost - through the Waitakere defence.
SUB: Sean LOVEMORE replaces Ryan DE VRIES
GOAL! AllAn PEARCE beats BATTY to a long diagonal ball taps it past him, regathers and taps into an empty net.
Yellow Card for ROWE as he clears out GWYTHER
BARTON gets in behind the Waitakere defence and tries to pull the bal lback but PELTER puts it out for the relative safety of a corner.
DOUBLE SUB: Canterbury send on Gagame FENI and Darren OVERTON for BARTON and TIPPERT
OVERTON tries his luck with a volley from an age away.Very good strike but deflects for a corner.
a MCDERMOTT shot just evades the head of PITMAN on the 6 yard box. Even a faint touch would have deflected it in.
Waitakere SUB: Dakota LUCAS takes the field to replace Mike GWYTHER.
GOAL! Danny ATTWELL meets TERRIS's cross with a screamer of a header. That'll make the last five interesting.
Canterbury have gone up a couple of gears as they now sniff the chance of salvaging a point. Enjoying their most best period on attack.
Freekick on the edge of teh area. CLAPHAM won it and will take it. Is this the moment?
Right into the face of PEARCE but that might have just sealed the points for the Premiership leaders
Waitakere on attack, but predictably head straight towards the corner flag to eat up time.
Final score: Waitakere 2 Canterbury 1. Post match reaction to follow.